Monday, April 20, 2015

A Giving Spirit

"Do not withhold from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to do it." -Proverbs 3:27 (ESV)


     In this world, we are to take everything that is given to us. We are told that everything is for the generic "me", and that everyone should do what they want. Every man for himself. In theory, this should work really well. If everyone takes care of himself, then no one has to worry about anything else, and we can simply work on our own issues. However, this doesn't really work at all. In fact, quite the opposite is true. If everyone were so caught up in trying to help everyone else, then where would the problem in this world be? Galatians 5:14 states that, "the whole law is fulfilled by one word: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'" 

     Everyone is blessed with something different. Whether it's physical wealth, the ability to always be able to build others up, or certain skills that can be used in order to help people towards heaven. We should use these gifts, not for ourselves, but for the benefit of others. I have recently discovered a talent for baking and cooking. I love it. I look at a recipe, or think of one in my head, and I put it all together, and then I get to eat it! I make a good portion of my own meals, as I enjoy doing so. Now if I only ever cook for myself and no one else, what good will come of that? First of all, I'd probably gain a lot of weight, and no one else would be able to enjoy my creations. Yes, of course I want to eat four dozen cookies. That would make me feel fantastic (at first, anyway). But what good does it do? Likewise, we should use our talents for others, and not for ourselves. Maybe I could bring some of those cookies to a friend who's been having a rough week, or to a shut in, or someone who has recently experienced a loss. And of course, this doesn't only apply to baking. This can be said for all of our gifts and talents. We should use them to benefit others, not only ourselves

    We should have a spirit that is always willing to give what we have in a loving, and kind way. Philippians 2:14 tells us to do everything without grumbling, or complaining. When we do something for someone else, or we give our time to someone, we shouldn't complain about it. It doesn't only sheds a negative light on us as Christians, but it also makes the person you're helping feel incompetent, as if they're a burden, and they shouldn't have asked for help. Do we want to discourage others from seeking help when it's needed? Of course not! We should always be happy and eager to help others. I bet they wished they could do what you're doing. I am a rather short specimen, only five feet and two inches tall, and I'm still taller than my mom by about an inch or so. When I was little and we would go to the grocery store, my mom and I would sometimes have to help each other get something off of the top shelf. She'd put me on her shoulders, and I'd reach whatever it was on the top shelf that we couldn't reach. Now, yes, we probably looked ridiculous, but it got the job done! What if one of us simply didn't want to do it? Would we be able to obtain those potato chips? Not at all. We would be, unfortunately, chip-less. Likewise, we as Christians need to always be willing to help those around us, or we will never reap any benefit.

     Today I would like to encourage you all to look at what you have, and use it for someone else's benefit. Go out of your way to help someone in need, and most importantly, always be seeking ways to share the gospel. There is no such thing as too much evangelism, and we should always be striving to share the gospel with everyone we meet. I know of people who have evangelized from their hospital bed, or even with the people who wrecked their car! There are no excuses, and we should always be looking for opportunities.